ALFRED PASIEKA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ALFRED PASIEKA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Iron molecule. Computer artwork of a cubic model of a molecule of alpha-iron floating over water. Iron (Fe) atoms are depicted as spheres. This structure is known as a "body-centred cubic crystal" in that atoms occur at each corner of the cube, with one in the centre, linked by atomic bonds. Iron is a silver- white metal capable of taking a high polish, ductile, malleable, and can be welded when hot. Three different physical forms of iron are known, with alpha- iron forming at temperatures cooler than 769 degrees Celsius. At this temperature, Fe atoms bond into the shape seen, forming an extensive lattice.
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